[This is the headline over a report published today on the website of the Barrhead News, a local newspaper circulating in Renfrewshire. It reads in part:]
Claims that the Lockerbie bomber is refusing to co-operate with East Renfrewshire Council have been rubbished.
It had been claimed by a candidate for the East Renfrewsire Parliamentary seat that convicted terrorist Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi was not co-operating with the council. (...)
However, a council spokesman pointed out that they have to treat Megrahi the same as everyone else within the local authority when it comes to confidential information.
Personal details the council holds of any Barrhead residents will not be released without the owner's consent and the same applies to Megrahi.
The council spokesman said: "We receive monthly medical reports as part of the release licence for Mr Megrahi.
"They are private and confidential medical reports and we won't be releasing them.
"We wouldn't release medical reports for any client and he, despite the circumstances and international background, is a criminal justice client like any other."
It was revealed that MSP George Foulkes had requested the details under the Freedom of Information Act but this was rejected, as was his appeal.
The council spokesman said: "We were asked to release personal medical reports about Mr Megrahi.
"We refused because these are personal data and their release would breach the data protection act which protects personal information.
"When the refusal was reviewed our senior legal adviser rightly checked through every possible avenue to test the original decision.
"The data protection act provides that it would not be a breach to release sensitive personal data about a person, if that person agrees to its release.
"As part of the review, it was absolutely right that we checked that position with Mr Megrahi's representatives and the response, which has been passed to Mr Foulkes, is that they wouldn't agree and therefore the original decision stands."